“We’re all humans, right?” By speaking those four words onstage at the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards, Taraji P. Henson continued the work for which she’d just accepted the coveted Golden Popcorn: putting up the Best Fight Against the System for her film Hidden Figures.
After being introduced by Black-ish‘s Tracee Ellis Ross and Congresswoman Maxine Waters (who you should follow on Twitter right now), Henson nearly dropped the heavy Golden Popcorn award but recovered nicely, then set her sights on shouting out what the film’s message of activism means in 2017.
“No one ever told me that girls couldn’t do math and science, but there was an understanding, right?” Henson said after shouting out her co-stars and “sisters” Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae. “There was an understanding that it was for boys. I remember getting this script [and] being very upset because I felt like a dream was stolen from me, and it became my mission and everyone’s mission who was involved with this film, to dispel that myth, that another young girl would not grow up thinking that her mind wasn’t capable of grasping math and science.”
Hidden Figures, which follows the story of three African American female mathematicians whose work was essential to NASA’s space missions in the 1960s, beat out Get Out, Loving, Luke Cage, and Mr. Robot in the category.
“The message of the movie is togetherness,” Henson concluded. “I hate the separateness. I hate that it’s man versus woman, black versus white, gay versus straight. Whatever. We’re all humans, right?” Right on.
For the best moments of the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards, check the highlight reel below.